While maybe not the most creative of names, BingTweets are just what they sound like - a combination of Microsoft's Bing search engine and Twitter messages coming together in a new site.
"Many people share their thoughts on Twitter, and search engines don’t currently do a great job of capturing that real-time content. We designed Bing to help you make faster, more informed decisions, and, since people often turn to real-time content to help them make decisions, BingTweets was a logical next step," Microsoft wrote on Bing's community blog.
To give an example, Microsoft said that as Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince opens, surfers can scan the official reviews, local theater listing, and get the scoop from the latest Tweets related to the movie, all in one fell swoop.
In its early form, the BingTweet website shows a list of popular terms at the top of the page grouped into different categories, and a search box sits to the right. Once you search for a term, the results are listed in typical Bing fashion taking up the majority of the page, with a column on the left slowly scrolling through related Twitter messages.
Give it a try right here, then hit the jump and tell us what you think.
Microsoft has pinned all its hopes on Bing. Its latest take on internet search has got off to a reasonable start. Bing managed to workup a bit of hype and so far hasn’t really disappointed in terms of performance. Now, the numbers are pouring in and they are also more than passable. Stats from Compete.com for the month of June – Bing’s inaugural month – show that it wasted no time in becoming the 13th most visited website in the U.S with 49.57 million visitors. It also happened to breeze past behemoths like Digg, Twitter and CNN. However, the summit still isn't in sight.
Still trying to decide whether to make the switch to Microsoft's Bing search engine or roll reliable with Google? Don't wrack your brain, not when you can use both!
We're not talking about doubling your search efforts with two separate browser windows or tabs. Instead, give bing-vs-google.com a try. This ingenious site made by Domagoj Pavlesic combines the search results of both Bing and Google and displays them in your browser side-by-side. A handful of links at the top lets you choose between splitting things up horizontally or vertically, or display just the Bing or Google search results.
Not much else to say, other than it works and it's pretty friggin' cool.
In what appears to be a desperate dig for traffic, Bing has decided to add Twitter messages to their search results in an attempt to take some market share from Google.
“We’re not indexing all of Twitter at this time… just a small set of prominent and prolific Twitterers to start. We picked a few thousand people to start, based primarily on their follower count and volume of tweets. We think this is an interesting first step toward using Twitter’s public API to surface Tweets in people search,” wrote Microsoft search general manager Sean Sucher. These results will appear in a separate box alongside the normal search results within Bing.
Ultimately, it’s not too surprising to see Microsoft do this – considering how Google has already admitted defeat in the real-time information race with Twitter.
What does a search engine have to do in order to pry users away from Google? We're not sure, but maybe more people will come if they think there will be punch and pie. Building a better (arguably) search engine isn't enough, according to a new study.
In a small case study, Catalyst Group found that users preferred the design and feature-set of Microsoft's Bing over that of Google. However, those same users said they would stick with Google, citing similar search results and familiarity with the search engine's Web services as reasons why.
"Bing generates interests, but it's hard to take me away from Google because I'm so comfortable with it," the subjects who chose Google told Catalyst researchers. "The differences are very small. They're too small for me to switch to Bing."
It should also be noted that the case study only including 12 participants.
If you’ll direct your attention to a picture here, you’ll notice that they’ve got a pretty good hunch, too. Given that just about everything in the picture (with the exception of the brand in the upper-left hand corner) is about the same.
Kayak’s Chief Marketing Officer Robert Birge has stated, “We have contacted them [Bing] through official channels about concerns about the similarities between Bing and Kayak. From the look and feel of their travel product, they seem to agree with our approach to the market.”
In a response, Bing’s Whitney Burke has said, “We are discussing the matter with Kayak. Bing Travel is based on independent development by Microsoft and Farecast.com, which Microsoft acquired in 2008. Any contrary allegations are without merit.”
One of the biggest concerns for online advertisers these days, is getting the most out of increasingly tight budgets, and protecting themselves from click-fraud can be difficult. Companies bid on search keywords, and depending on the popularity of the term, often pay top dollar to float to the top of the sponsored results list. This model is tested and true, but once they reach their spending limits, they drop off leaving the next highest bidder in their place. Click-fraud artists can be somewhat hard to trace, they often operate through proxies, or sometimes even botnets to mask their IP’s. But after a year of intense investigation, Microsoft has finally tracked down three individuals linked to a number of small corporation names, and is taking them to court.
Microsoft is seeking about $750,000 in damages from British Columbia, Canada residents Eric Lam, Gordon Lam, and Melanie Suen. “We have decided to become more active in the commercial fraud area on the enforcement side,” said Tim Cranton, associate general counsel for Microsoft. “The theory is you can change the economics around crime or fraud by making it more expensive.”
Analysts believe that Microsoft is simply testing the waters with this lawsuit, and primarily hope that it will intimidate people away from a life of online crime. This specific case involved the three accused fraudsters of running up the tabs on keyword searches related to “auto insurance” and “World of Warcraft”. Once they had expended the budgets of their competitors, their network of sites would slowly float to the top, and pickup traffic at bargain prices.
With little legal precedent to lean on, do you think this case will be successful?
While many of us consider Bing to be no real threat to Google, it would seem that Google thinks otherwise. With the recent unveiling of their “Explore Google Search” page, they’re allowing users to see everything that they offer.
The new page features plenty of tips on quick searches that can help you on a day-to-day basis. Everything from weather, movie times, sports scores and flight tracking is available all through Google’s search engine.
If you want to see how Google is stepping up their game and showing off every feature that they offer, be sure to check out the page here.
According to market researcher ComScore, Bing has had a successful second week in the world of search engines.
Bing is up roughly 3 percent from where Microsoft was before they rebranded and reworked Live Search, in terms of total searches and total query share.
“It appears that Microsoft Bing has continued to generate interest from the market for the second consecutive week,” stated ComScore’s Senior VP, Mike Hurt. “[This] early data reflect[s] a continued positive market reaction to Bing in the initial stages of its launch.”
Still though, it’s very early in the game. As great as this improvement is, Microsoft still has a lot of catching up to do if they plan to seriously compete with Google – and they seem to recognize that.
After being out of the office last week, the gang is back to talk about this week's biggest tech headlines. Will and Norm recap their adventure at the Electronics Entertainment Expo, Gordon gets riled up over Apple's WWDC announcements, and we collectively anticipate upcoming Facebook's vanity URL service. facebook.com/willsmith, unfortunately, has already been claimed. We also try a bold experiment: using Bing as our default search engine for a week. How long before someone gives up and goes back to Google? And as always, we answer a few listener questions and bring you Gordon's rant of the week. All this plus more in this edition of the No BS podcast!
Do you have a tech question? A comment? A tale of technological triumph? Just need to get something off your chest? A secret to share? Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or call our 24-hour No BS Podcast hotline at 877.404.1337 x1337--operators are standing by.